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24.02.2005 Regional News

Concern citizens of Kwamo petition Asantehene

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Kwamo (Ash), Feb. 24, GNA - Some concerned citizens of Kwamo in the Ejisu-Juaben District of Ashanti have petitioned the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu 11, to destool the Kwamohene, Nana Osei Amoako-Mensah 11, for being an ex-convict and embezzlement of stool land funds. Attached to the petition were certified copied of documents relating to his imprisonment in 1951 and in 1961 for embezzlement and stealing.

In the said petition, the citizens accused the chief of failing to render the stool accounts to the people of Kwamo, since his enstoolment about 32 years ago.

They contended that part of the land in the town demarcated as a cemetery had been sold to people to build residential houses on it. "Nana Amoako-Mensah has also sold to private developers, a piece of land allocated and reserved for "Obrempong Tano, Asanie Kyere and Akonodi Shrines, whilst the land reserved alongside streams at Kwamo, especially Bodiwaa, Boadaa, Saman and Asuoadwoa, which flow through the Kwamo township have been sold to private developers who have virtually built in the beds of the stream".

The petition said, though they had evidence that the chief has sold about 1000 plots of land for both residential and industrial use, funds accruing from the sale of these plots of land were yet to be committed into development projects.

This, the petition pointed out had negatively impacted on the socio-economic development of the town, which had also affected the standard of living of the people.

The petitioners recounted how some roofing sheets bought by the community at moderate prices from the government had been diverted by Nana Amoako-Mensah for his personal use even though they were meant for the roofing of schools in the town.

The petitioners cannot understand why having abdicated on 23rd October, 1991, Nana Amoako-Mensah managed to get back on the stool; a situation which they claimed was a breach of custom and tradition and therefore asked the Asantehene to expedite action on their petition to pave way for the development of Kwamo.

When contacted for his reaction to the charges, Nana Amoako-Mensh denied all the charges and said the petition was an attempt by the concerned citizens and a section of the king makers to tarnish his hard won reputation.

Nana Amoakohene said he did not understand why the people picked on him for not developing the town when they knew very well that the district assembly was responsible for the development of the area. "I have personally sought the intervention of Mr Akwasi Osei Adjei, Member of Parliament (MP) for Ejisu-Juaben in this matter when I realised that the assembly was leaving Kwamo out of its development projects.

He denied selling the land allocated for shrines and other development and said as the custodian of Kwamo land, he could not do such a thing.

The chief therefore challenged his accusers to produce just a single person he was alleged to have sold the sacred land to. Explaining circumstance that led to his incarceration in 1961, the Kwamohene said in 1962, he was cleared of all the charges of stealing and embezzlement as his employers Ghana Commercial Bank and that the source was traced to a casher who was later arrested and prosecuted.

"When the truth came out I was granted an amnesty by Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah and was duly compensated".

Nana Amoako-Mensah accused his Benkumhene, Nana Mensah Ababio whom he destooled recently for his appropriation of stool property, of being the brain behind all these.

He said the destooled Benkumhene sold Kwamo lands indiscriminately without rendering accounts even though I have not constituted any committee to sell lands in the town.

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